Mobb Deep: Hate In Their Blood?

posted May 19, 2006 12:00:00 AM CDT | 20 comments

Boy oh boy did Mobb Deep take the wrath of many when they signed on the dotted line with G-Unit. Havoc and Prodigy were chastised for selling out and falling into the safety net of Curtis Interscope Jackson, they had their talent and their character abused. With their first project while seated at the Mighty Interscope table receiving both positive and negative reviews during the typical build up we see before an album drops; many fans were curious to see whether what critics penned was deserved or unjust. The industry was curious to know if Mobb Deep finally going to be marketed correctly and promoted right? Was the Mother Ship able to work its magic on the duo who had maintained respect in the streets, spitting their reality rhymes over the meticulously crafted beats?

When I had the pleasure of talking to Prodigy and Havoc it was obviously way too early in the day for Prodigy to be making small talk, as his responses parlayed with what the critics were saying about rhymes. However, all I kept at the front of my mind was Murda Muzik the album that had converted me from house junkie to Hip Hop addict.

Aligning with Interscope/Aftermath/G-Unit had fans perplexed, New York artists tended to stay to themselves, however 50 Cent had welcomed into his fold some of the Rotten apples most known but under-represented artists and Mobb Deep in a sense came up trumps. They were finally getting their just desserts for their tenure in the game and how could people be mad at that? The days where people did this rap shit for the love have died, now emceeing is seen as a career; a job title from this is now sought and participants want to hear the ch-ching as they stack up their cash.

Asking the Mobb about how they could respond to those who had frowned when joining forces with G-Unit, Prodigy said, You know if they are frowning, they aint really fans. Havoc reiterated by explaining, You know I feel sorry for them, obviously they are the sort of people who dont want to see people excel to another level. They have a lot of hate in their blood and they just have issues, how could you be mad at someone who is trying to take it to the next level? It was a move they had to make, regardless if die-hard fans from the days of The Infamous felt they had compromised their creativity and artistic direction by making it.

Interscope has a natural Midas touch as everything they tend to touch turns to gold. Working with the gang is as Prodigy said incredible, When we are collaborating with Dre, Em and 50, all these artists and producers working together, thats ill for hip-hop. But when it comes to Mobb Deep people appear to more concerned with cosmetic issues, why did Havoc adopt the moniker, Hollywood Hav? Is it because rolling with the Rap elite he feels he has to personify celebrity now as opposed to the street persona he once was? Apparently, not as he explained, People take something the wrong way and that was meant for them to do that. It really is an inside joke, its not because I act Hollywood, its because I wear a lot of shades. His apparent addiction to Ray Bans post signing to G-Unit did give me cause for concern but late nights at the studio and a lil too much bud can play havoc with a mans eyes, excuse the pun. You know when they are not doing too much themselves, they try to put the focus on someone else in a negative way and worry about that instead of what they should be doing, is how Havoc breaks down the haters and as we all know G-Unit have plenty of those to deal with.

Hate however doesnt deter the G-Unit army as it is built on strong foundations of loyalty and Mobb Deep explained their loyalty to the city that birthed Hip-Hop with great pride and passion. The artists that still rep the Rotten Apple to the fullest when it comes to the mainstream are those like Mobb Deep who have been staples of a Hip-Hop diet for over a decade. But for a city that will always be number one because we started this shit, allowing the South to have their shine is no hardship. The Dirty South is popping right now but that doesnt mean that New York is dead, it just means that the south is getting their well deserved time in the spotlight, Havoc explained. Nevertheless, resuscitating New York Hip-Hop is at the forefront of many of New York artists minds.

Unifying and coming together is something that 50 exemplified when he signed the Mobb to G-Unit. Checking egos at the door for the name of Hip-Hop is something that might have taken time within New Yorks solid walls but it is happening. Working as executive producers alongside Def Jam President Jay-Z on Sam Scarfos debut album shows to move forward with the re-birth of New York Hip-Hop is more important than the beef Jay and Prodigy once had. Collaborating for the future is obviously something New Yorks finest wish to pursue.

So with a new label, a new gang to work with and obviously a different attitude we waited with bated breath to see just how having a powerhouse like Interscope/Aftermath/G-Unit behind them would encourage sales and alas it really didnt. The polished veneer on Blood Money hasnt encouraged any difference in numbers really to the typical gritty approach we once saw. But one thing that can be said Interscope never give up on their artists so with hard work and determination you can guarantee when the duo hit the roads on tour, sales will steadily climb and they will go gold. We are going on tour worldwide. We are doing the whole US and after that we are going to do Europe and parts of Asia, but as soon as they check back in it will be work work work again, because that is what it is about. All they want to do is make music, that is what we do every day, we get in there, go in and do what we gotta do, Prodigy affirmed. They havent sold out and really even if Mobb Deep havent given their die-hard fans a project that correlates with the style and direction past efforts promoted they are just continuing their journey with more connects and more money in their pockets than before.

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